• Jul 13, 2009
Mercedes wardrobe commercial malfunction -- Click above to watch video

The voiceover for Mercedes' "Ignite" commercial for the new E-Class starts with "It is, quite simply, the most advanced automobile we have every created." However, during the start-up sequence before that voiceover, the actual commercial begins with a warning light: when the driver turns the car on, the message "Front Right SRS Malfunction Service Required" appears in the dash – not the type of message you expect to see when your car fires up and does its system check. Still, knowing how these things work, we suspect this commercial was probably filmed early on in a pre-production prototype with an inactive airbag – a common enough occurrence with these sorts of vehicles.

In any case, to watch the commercial and check out Mercedes' official response to the flub, hit the jump. Hat tip to Wai.

UPDATE: Mercedes-Benz USA blocked access to video of the commercial on YouTube, but they didn't get rid of all the copies. Follow the jump for a salvaged excerpt of the commercial.



[Source: YouTube, Mercedes-Benz]


"During the filming of our latest E Class television advert, the vehicle was significantly altered to create an environment conducive to filming the interior of the vehicle. As is typical in such a situation, doors and seats were removed and a number of features de-activated in order to allow the camera rig access. The vehicle's safety sensors performed exactly as they should and activated a warning signal indicating a disruption of the vehicle's Supplemental Restraint System.

"The fact that the image -- which is visible only in a frame by frame review of the ad i.e. not by the naked eye -- was not edited out of the advertisement was an oversight and has subsequently been corrected.

"The E Class is the most tested car we have ever launched and reaches the highest quality levels we have ever produced.

"While this is a mistake in the editing process it is in no way a reflection on the quality or durability of the E-Class"


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  • 97 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Had a Merc as a corporate rental while working in Germany. Really nice car, but what WORKING CLASS schlub can afford one! The only people I've seen who buy them are corporate execs on expense accounts, and people who make a million per year off other peoples labor.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I have an 03 E500 and yes there have been a few things that have gone wrong with the car....But the way I see it when people compare their Toyota's or Fords being more reliable...My Merc wood too if it didnt have triple the amount of gadgets then most cars..so theres more things to break down then in your average Camry with just a ac and radio nobe as appoose to the 1001 buttons, electronics and motors operating everything in my Merc....I have a knob that controls the headrest to go up and down are u kidding me hell yeah theres more stuff to break in my car lol...With all the stuff the Merc have they are pretty reliable...
      • 5 Years Ago
      All this high tech stuff is great... until it goes all wrong. If you dont buy a full extended warranty for a car like this.... you must be rich, and can afford all of these moving parts that will (eventually) go bad. Give me a carbuerator and 8 spark plugs, and I'll get you where you want to go.
      michael rodriguez
      • 5 Years Ago
      That could be the case. But, with ALL vehicles, during start-up, all warning lights are saposed to go threw a test sequence before they return to the normal.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I love Mercedes' response...just as coy and deceptive as their replies to my Mercedes maladies. Their cars used to be made like tanks, now, look out. I'm afraid that this car is showing its' true colors already. If you must have a Mercedes, lease, never purchase. That way after two to three years, the lemon is all theirs.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Not going to lie...my mother's E class has had a malfunction message on her dash since the first week. Dealer was never able to fix it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      "The build quality and particularly the reliability / dependability (especially electronics related) of BMW nad M'Benz are quite frankly not up to scratch considering thier astronomical purchase price and it here they can both take lessons from Lexus whom arguably engineer the highest build quality (often referred to as impeccable) and the most reliable prestige motoring that can be purchased today. "

      I've had first hand experience with problems experienced by Mercedes,especially the S-Class. My father's S-Class engine started to rev by itself automatically for no reason,if the car had been in reverse or drive the consequences would have been disasterous.

      I was actually driving an S550 when the transmission decided that it was going to disengage. Fortunately I had been turning at an island so I was able to push the car to a parking lot. If I had been on the freeway the consequences could have been fatal.

      Even some of the lower end Mercedes cars have problems. My dentist' E-Class stopped on the freeway and she was rear ended,fortunately her injuries were comparatively minor.

      Don't get me wrong the S Class is a wonderful car to drive. It's fast huge luxurious. The suspension on the S Class is phenomenal and in cojnuction with it's power the you can really hustle the car around corners.

      It's just that's reliability is not 100%. My Lexus GS350 is much closer to 100% reliability. Yes I have an annoying problem where the windows will roll down and the sunroof will open maybe five or six times since I've owned the car. However the Lexus has never let me down,especially when I was driving.

      I have a new set of tires and even with a worn set of tires the Lexus was still fast and I never found it wanting for speed around corners. Perhaps it's not quite as fast as the S550 (which is over twice as much) but at that point you're talking about the difference between insane and reckless driving.
      SandyBetty
      • 5 Years Ago
      Motorists who have vehicles that are 1994 and newer, and some earlier models, have dash board lights constantly going on. Unfortunately, these motorists must take their vehicles to a new car dealership for repairs because the car companies, such as Mercedes, has the repair info. But, with dealerships closing and motorists having to drive farther and farther for simple repairs, such as shutting off the dash board lights or resetting the computer info, they have no idea whether a real repair problem exists or its just a malfunctioning light. Safety comes into play. There's legislation in Congress that is promoting the ability of consumer to actually own their repair info and go into a convenient, affordable independent repair shop, if they choose. All vehicle owners should log onto: www.righttorepair.org and send your legislators a message. Say goodbye to dash board lights that can't be turned off or not knowing whether you're driving an unsafe vehicle.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Anyone else happen to notice that the guy turns the key and there's the deep revving noise, but the tachometer stays at zero? Or am I just looking for something to call a mistake now?
      • 5 Years Ago
      Many cars do this. It has to do with vapor lock. When the gas tank is filled, the owner or attendant didn't screw the cap on tight enough. I have had this problem with several cars. Just undo the cap, re tighten and in about 3 miles the light will go off.

      John
      • 5 Years Ago
      Mercedes builds crap the cars are over priced they are the Ford of Europe and anyone who pays for one of those junk heaps deserves what they get, I have a 2003 Mustang GT and I would put my car up against any Mecedes on any track, I have made a few modifications to my cars engine and suspension and I still have less into it than any of that German crap and my car will stand toe to toe with anything Mercedes makes.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Technological advancement is not a valid excuse for stupid problems.

      If I pay $50k for a car with all sorts of fancy gadgetry, the fancy gadgetry needs to work. If it doesn't, I might as well buy the $15k car that doesn't have it. If I wanted to invest in the development of gadgetry that wasn't ready for production yet, I'd buy stock, not a car.

      I've owned two Benzes - a W123 (300D) and W124 (300TE). The W123 was a tank, and I'd buy one again in a second. The W124 was nice, probably the nicest car I've owned, but there wasn't a single thing that went wrong with it that cost less than $1000 to fix. That was the car that made me swear off of luxury cars for good - give me a manual transmission and roll-up windows any day.

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